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Gen Z in view

Image Source: Gen Z in View Report

Recently our media partner agency Carat released their Gen Z in View whitepaper. With so many learnings in one great read we thought it would be a shame not to share this with you. With a brief summary below and the full report attached please take a minute to learn more about this game-changing group.

Like every generation, Gen Z encapsulates a broad and diverse group of individuals. Born between 1997 and 2012, Gen Z is a young generation already defined by greatness, a generation set to make history, and a generation defined by firsts, and by extremes.

A generation set to make history, from the activism of Greta Thunberg, to the athleticism of Naomi Osaka.

They are a generation that boasts the youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize winner: Malala Yousafzai And the youngest ever billionaire: Kylie Jenner.

This is a generation defined by firsts, and by extremes. Not only are Gen Z the most digitally connected and most ethnically diverse generation in history, but they are also set to become the most valuable generation we’ve ever seen. According to McKinsey, Gen Z already make up 40% of global consumers

Gen Z are young, but they are powerful, and with the oldest of the group aged only 23, they are just getting started.

Money Matters

Being young children when the GFC hit in 2008 they have grown up with an outlook of global economic uncertainty leading them to be actively engaged in their finances. They are debt averse and show strong scepticism of traditional financial services providers and products, like credit cards. This scepticism has given rise to a new cohort of financial institutions: buy now pay later providers like Afterpay and Zip offering transparent fee and payment structures appealing to this generation.

Gen Z (and some younger Millennials) are also set to inherit an estimated $3.5 trillion over the next 20 years from Baby Boomers. This will give them considerable spending power, making it even more essential for brands, particularly those in financial services, to break down the barriers and find a way to connect with this younger group.

COVID Context

The pandemic has disproportionately impacted the work and mental health of Gen Z in employment and mental health. Almost one in three (28%) of 18-24’s lost their job. This is much higher than the figure of approximately 3% for the wider workforce. This impact was due to them working in industries that were temporarily closed or unable to operate under COVID restrictions – hospitality, retail, culture and leisure. 50% were on casual contracts, a figure that rose to 70% for industries most effected. This caused youth mental health being significantly impacted, affecting almost a quarter of those aged 18.24 in 2020, compared to just 9% in 2017.

However, Gen Z are more optimistic that life will get back to normal quicker with research showing 62% are ready to rebuild society from the ground up post-COVID.

Advertising Attitudes

Gen Z are broadly less positive towards all advertising formats compared to other generations. This is counterintuitive for a digital generation, however research has shown that the formats with the highest positive receptiveness are all traditional media – OOH, Cinema, Print and TV. When digital savvy Gen Z are targeted digitally the experience can often feel invasive. Only a third like online ads and most actively avoid them, with 70% skipping pre-roll video ads, and 52% using ad blockers. The lesson for marketers is not to rule out traditional media, and if you are advertising online, be immersive, not invasive.

So, how do advertisers make it a positive experience – Gen Z express real positivity when they are given control over whether to play an ad or not, and when there is a value exchange (a reward) for viewing advertiser content. Research shows that 41% have a positive reaction to mobile ads that offer rewards.

Rules of Engagement

Give them control: avoid non-skippable pre-rolls and invasive pop-ups.

Feed their curiosity: invest some of your budget in custom content that speaks to their unique needs.

Enhance their favourite new spaces: think sponsored lenses or Tik Tok challenges that authentically engage.

Don’t waste their time: Gen Z are particularly likely to want their ads short – ideally less than 10 seconds. Distil your ads into bite-sized messages with impact.

Finally, treat them as collaborators, not consumers. Give them more from brands than mere impressions or even products as research shows that 60% of Gen Z want brands to value their opinions, not just their dollars. They want to feel like they are a part of a campaign with the ability to make collaborative decisions, like voting for something to happen and changing the trajectory of the story.

For more top insights please read the full report here!

Gen Z in view
Download PDF • 14.92MB

Linda Fagerlund and Danni Wright



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